Observed Distribution Of South American Relief Features



The land below us is always in motion. Plate tectonics studies these restless effects to give us a better understanding of the Earth and its past. New molten rocks are poured out in the form of magma from the mid-ocean ridges. The rock is recycled and re-entered back into the earth in deep ocean trenches through convection current. The convection current in the mantle drives plates around either against or away from each other. These collisions give rise to earthquakes, volcanoes, mountains, and continental drift. The crashing and spreading of the plates forms the landscape of the Earth as we see it today. The positions of the landmasses today are a result of continental drift. During the ...

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most solids, it will deform if long-term stress is applied. Presently, there are more than fourteen plates in the Earth’s crust. Upwelling hot magma flows out from mid-ocean ridges and then cools down when exposed to the cooled environment outside; the layer of cooled magma forms the lithosphere. When magma flows out from the ridges, the crust is fractured and a new ocean floor is built spreading perpendicularly away from the ridge. Because of this constant upwelling, the ocean is relatively shallow in these areas. Sea floor spreading and continental drift are the products of this continual upwelling as you can see in the relief maps of South America.
The cooled magma will, in time, sink back down into the Earth in the deep ocean trenches. The mantle sinking down produces subduction zones or Benioff zones. The deepest part of the ocean resides in these areas. There are three types of boundaries where plates meet. They are Divergent boundaries—the upwelling of magma; convergent ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 1/8/2004 04:01:28 PM
Category: Science & Nature
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 855
Pages: 4

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